The United States of Shaky Retirement: Why We Lag Far Behind

The United States of Shaky Retirement: Why We Lag Far Behind

When it comes to prepping for your golden years, you’re probably familiar with the standard advice.

Start saving early, take advantage of your employer match—you get the picture.

But here’s one strategy you may not have considered: Move to Europe!

That’s where you’ll have a better chance at a financially stable retirement, according to a new global survey.

The research, conducted by Natixis Global Asset Management, ranked 150 countries for retirement security based on four categories: health, material well-being, finances and quality of life. According to the results, the U.S. ranks 19th, trailing a bunch of European and Asian nations, including Iceland and Korea.

The top two spots went to Switzerland and Norway for the second year in a row, thanks largely to widespread access to health care and relatively low income inequality in those nations.

Although this is the third consecutive year the U.S. has been ranked number 19, the researchers point out that certain troubling trends could push us lower in the coming years.

For one, there’s still a significant gap between the wealthiest and poorest Americans. The researchers note that the U.S. boasts high per-capita income and spends more on health care than any other country—but only some people benefit from these resources.

Moreover, the U.S. population is aging rapidly. In fact, the share of Americans over the age of 65 is expected to rise from 13% in 2010 to 21% in 2050. That could mean cuts to programs like Medicare and Social Security, as there will be fewer working Americans to fund them.

In less sobering news, the U.S. improved in the health and finance categories since last year, likely because of the growing economy and the increasing numbers of people covered by health insurance.

Not ready to settle down with the Swiss? Find out how to boost your retirement savings from the comfort of your own, American home.

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